Tuesday, August 14, 2007

Basset Hound

Basset Hound

Basset Hounds are the lovable curmudgeons of the dog world. The Basset
Hound breed has captivated the public imagination since the 1920s,
appearing on television, cartoons, and even the cover of Time
magazine. The dogs make great pets, especially for families with
children, even though they are a bit hard to train.

Here are the characteristics of the Basset Hound breed as determined
by the American Kennel Club's published breed standard.

The Basset Hound's Behavior
Recommended for: family pet, hunting.

Basset Hounds tend to show great endurance in physical activity.
Nonetheless, the Basset Hound dog breed tends toward a more laid-back
temperament, and may not even bark so much as howl or whine. According
to Wikipedia, Basset Hounds often need a little encouragement to
become active or else they will laze around. They also tend to overeat
and gain weight if their diet is not regulated. Fortunately, Bassets
typically enjoy playing with children, so a large family should be
able to keep a Basset Hound dog in shape. Also according to Wikipedia,
Basset Hounds tend to be harder to train than most other dogs, since
they are "stubborn."

Remember that breed only provides a general clue as to any individual
dog's actual behavior. Make sure to get to know dogs well before
bringing them into your home.

Basset Hound's Physical Characteristics
Size: 14 inches
Coat: hard, smooth, and short
Color: According to the official American Kennel Club breed standard,
coloration is not essential to the Basset Hound breed. Basset Hounds
can be any hound color. But, most commonly Basset Hounds are tricolor
(black, tan, and white), red and white, closed red and white, or lemon
and white (according to Wikipedia).
Eyes: brown, slightly sunken
Ears: extremely long, low set
Skull: domed
Muzzle: deep, heavy
Nose: Black, with wide open nostrils
Tail: long, tapering, curved, and standing upright
The Basset Hound's Origins and History
The following historical facts come from Wikipedia.

Country/Region of Origin: France

Original purpose: originally used to hunt rabbits and hare

Name: "Basset" comes from the French word "bas" meaning "low" or "dwarf".

Historical notes: The breed is descended from the St. Hubert's Hound,
which is similar to today's Bloodhound. How did Basset Hounds get so
short? The friars at St. Hubert's Abbey in medieval France
deliberately bred the dogs for achondroplasia, a genetic disorder that
causes dwarfism. (Humans with achondroplasia are usually around four
feet tall.) The friars wanted a dog that could follow a scent under
the brush in dense forests. The Basset Hound became a popular icon in
the USA after being featured on the cover of Time magazine in 1928.
Since then, Basset Hounds have remained popular in the US mass media.

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